Pramukhswami Medical College in Karamsad, India, hosted National Consultations on Reforms in Medical Education, April 1-3, 2011. Eight FAIMER Fellows from Pramukhswami organized the event, among them Himanshu Pandya (CMCL 2007), who served as Organizing Secretary. The consultations addressed four broad areas of medical education in India:
- structural reforms
- review of current issues and trends in curriculum
- review of innovations in assessment
- inclusion of research and ethics
Within each of these areas, 40 health professions education experts from India and abroad debated two or three subthemes over the course of the three-day meeting. Included among the experts were Dr. Pandya, Anshu (CMCL 2007, PHIL 2009), Chetna Desai (CMCL 2007), Sarmishtha Ghosh (GSMC 2007), Sanjay Gupta (GSMC 2011), Praveen Singh (CMCL 2008), Suman Singh (CMCL 2008), Uday Shankar Singh (GSMC 2008), and Rita Sood (PHIL 2005).
Recommendations arising from the debates were presented on the last day of the Consultations and included the following:
- A national policy to ensure an adequate number and equitable distribution of health care professionals and medical colleges throughout the country
- Introduction of a mandatory accreditation process for all medical colleges and teaching hospitals in the country
- Implementation in phases, depending upon local resources, of an integrated learning program for the undergraduate medical course
- Integration of a holistic understanding of patients and an integral healing process into the core medical curriculum
- Alignment of student assessment with predefined learning outcomes based on health care needs
- A structured curriculum for research methods and ethics for the medical course
On hand to hear the recommendations were Dr. S. K. Sarin, Chairman of the Board of Governors of the Medical Council of India, and Dr. Harish Padh, Vice Chancellor, Sardar Patel University.
Looking forward, Pramukhswami Medical College plans to host additional national-level consultations to facilitate regular dialogue and debate in an effort to promote the incorporation of further reforms and trends in medical education commensurate with India’s health care needs.